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Discussion Starter #1
Thought I would take the 166 out for a cruise today, pulled out of the garage and parked up outside my house. I locked up and upon turning round I realised the 166 wasn't where I left it and it had rolled backwards about 8 meters down the street into my 6 day old Giulietta!

Luckily no one was hurt and both cars are undamaged, The daft thing is I always leave my cars in gear and the one time I dont this happens!

On inspection it looks like the handbrake cable is weak , I think the 166 may be a bit jealous of the new arrival!
 

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Very lucky, looks like as if new brake cables are required soon or the rear brakes did lubrication, when was the M.O.T' done?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Mid october was the MOT, The handbrake cables were replaced 2 years in April.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
the calipers tend to seize up a bit over time...strip, clean and refit and see how that goes.
Thank you , I think thats next weekends task
 

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Discussion Starter #7
wooooooow i bet that was a heart stopping moment!

New cables, and a full clean of the calipers as Neil said.
Oh yea, a feeling I never want to repeat !
 

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I've never relied on the handbrake on any Italian cars. It's just a decorative item, a piece of stage wear. Don't use it else it'll be spoiled for it's annual outing to the MOT. :cheese:
 

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Firstly, never trust a handbrake in an Alfa - always leave it in gear! Secondly, you can get new seal kits for the rear callipers so you can re-condition, clean and they'll be as good as new. Fit a decent set of new cables - fiddly, but worth the effort and, with a bit of adjustment, you'll find the handbrake will work fine on just three or four clicks - just like mine! A common MOT failure item so may as well bite the bullet and replace/renew the whole set-up.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Firstly, never trust a handbrake in an Alfa - always leave it in gear! Secondly, you can get new seal kits for the rear callipers so you can re-condition, clean and they'll be as good as new. Fit a decent set of new cables - fiddly, but worth the effort and, with a bit of adjustment, you'll find the handbrake will work fine on just three or four clicks - just like mine! A common MOT failure item so may as well bite the bullet and replace/renew the whole set-up.
I know, ever since owning the 166 Ive always left my cars in gear on a few occasions it didnt hold in the garage so I learnt, just this one time I forgot and I almost paid the price, Il try and get the parts this week and do it at the weekend.
 

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It's sticky cables that leads to sticky calipers and poor handbrake performance. Marginal design frankly, they need a stronger return spring on the handbrake actuating lever at the caliper end IMO.

But, given a non-sticky caliper and a decent OEM cable correctly adjusted, so that the operating lever can return fully to the caliper end stop, the handbrakes work perfectly well.

Not using the handbrake is going to agravate the situation.
 

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Not using the handbrake is going to agravate the situation.
That's not been my experience. Continual use seems to wear it out. I do find myself putting it on once in a blue moon - eg after I've used a hire car for a week and got into the habit. Maybe that's enough?
 

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I dont use mine purly because I keep driving with the hand brake on GRRRRRR! Otherwise id use it unless its icy cold.

Ive put heat shrink on mine to stop water getting in.

Hello Chris, hope your well.

How do you properly adjust the lever - new cables and I still have poor performance - down to adjustment.
 

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I say you should use the handbrake if the car is in frequent use. If the car is standing, leave in gear with the handbrake off to avoid any seizing up. It's there to be used, and if serviced properly, then use it!
 

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I engage it every now and again, but never leave it on......just to free it up. I dont think ill have a cable issue anytime soon after sealing it up.....me hopes. And its full with grease and WD40 so super smoooth
 

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Yes, when we changed the handbrake cables, everything was greased accordingly and the cable protected to stop any moisture returning and getting sent up the cable, causing damage. The whole thing is a bit of a weak design really but a good overhaul of the callipers and new cables and it'll be as good as new!
 

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Hi Anesh.

The trick is to make sure the cables are loose and that the caliper operating lever has fully retracted, then work the footbrake repeatedly so the internal self adjusters can do their thing. You should then get a good handbrake operation and a good pedal. Once you are happy it bites properly, then take out the excess slack by adjusting at the lever end...but ONLY once the handbrake is properly adjusted and working.

If it won't self adjust, then you've got a caliper problem to deal with....and it's vital to make sure you adjust the cable slack as the last step, or the self adjusters don't work as they rely on that last bit of return travel to allow the internal worm to advance.

..and of course, 2 issues really, the weak return spring plus the idiotic cable path that just begs for a puddle of water to collect inside the cable....
 
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